Reviewed by Crescenda Long
First of all, let me state for the record that I am very late to the party on this one; Sirenicide already boasts three complete seasons (plus numerous extras,) and so far, I have only listened to the first two episodes of Season One. This review is aimed towards new fans like me hunting for more horror podcasts to binge on.
From bodies disappearing from morgues to eerily timed car crashes on dark highways, Sirenicide feels like those ‘urban-legend’ style ghost stories that used to terrify and delight my friends and I when we were kids — and it only gets better from there. After a mysterious hit-and-run surgery leaves Matthew Finnis scarred and inexplicably altered, his search for the truth leads him down a strange path of trauma and interwoven tragedies. In episode one, “The Ambulance Man,” Matthew interviews Charles Blackwell, a more recent victim of what appears to be the same diabolical surgeon. In the second episode, “The Suffering Loop,” he meets a young man who believes his home is being haunted by a victim less fortunate than Charles and Matthew. Each encounter pulls Matthew and the listeners deeper into the intrigue surrounding these tragedies, leaving listeners as eager as Matthew himself to know what exactly is going on.
The dialogue in these first two episodes is somewhat stilted at times, and suffers from the same narration problems that many audio-only dramas face. But the intriguing storyline and the fantastic sound editing more than make up for it. While my listening experience has been limited to only these first two episodes, Sirenicide contains a number of different interlocking and stand-alone narratives centered around the town of Morston, Texas. At its core, the drama seems to be a story about the trauma and fear that bind people together, and the ways in which we are forced to either process our grief or risk succumbing to it. I’m also a big fan of the original soundtrack, which manages to hold the narrative tension even as it blurs at times into lines of a more wistful, artistic melancholy. Dark, suspenseful, and brilliantly edited, this is a podcast with genuine substance beneath all the grime and gore. And I can’t wait to hear what showrunner Johnny Stitches and his team come up with next.